Paul Laurence Dunbar

(1872-1906 / Ohio / United States)

If I Could But Forget - Poem by Paul Laurence Dunbar

If I could but forget
The fullness of those first sweet days,
When you burst sun-like thro' the haze
Of unacquaintance, on my sight,
And made the wet, gray day seem bright
While clouds themselves grew fair to see.
And since, no day is gray or wet
But all the scene comes back to me,
If I could but forget.

If I could but forget
How your dusk eyes look into mine,
And how I thrilled as with strong wine
Beneath your touch; while sped amain
The quickened stream thro' ev'ry vein;
How near my breath fell to a gasp,
When for a space our fingers met
In one electric vibrant clasp,
If I could but forget.

If I could but forget
The months of passion and of pain,
And all that followed in their train--
Rebellious thoughts that would arise,
Rebellious tears that dimmed mine eyes,
The prayers that I might set love's fire
Aflame within your bosom yet--
The death at last of that desire--
If I could but forget.


Comments about If I Could But Forget by Paul Laurence Dunbar

  • (9/27/2018 8:53:00 PM)

    I know how this feels. He speaks to the soul of human experience. (Report)Reply

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  • Ludolf Dauphin (2/16/2018 9:08:00 PM)

    Such a lovely poem. The pain is real. (Report)Reply

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  • Terry Craddock (3/12/2015 12:28:00 AM)

    Love passion deep emotions, have times of 'If I could but forget', when ecstasy of love awoken, fades into bitter ashes of regretful despair. This raises the famous question, is it better to have loved and lost, or would sanity peace of mind choose, not to have loved at all? (Report)Reply

    4 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Ramesh T A (3/11/2015 1:15:00 PM)

    Nicely written poem to read and enjoy sure! (Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (3/11/2015 5:18:00 AM)

    The hardships that experienced and sorrow a good poem. (Report)Reply

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  • Sylva Portoian (1/30/2010 8:11:00 PM)

    Dunber, We pretend to forget
    But we can't forget.
    Even your hearty poem
    We will never forget
    Because you're a special poet.
    You wrote in a special day.
    (Report)Reply

    2 person liked.
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  • (4/18/2006 11:43:00 AM)

    A hurting heart beautifully described. (Report)Reply

    3 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (3/16/2006 11:00:00 AM)

    A really beautiful poem. You can feel his aching heart! (Report)Reply

    4 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (6/4/2005 1:58:00 PM)

    oh this is wonderful (Report)Reply

    3 person liked.
    1 person did not like.
Read all 9 comments »



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Read poems about / on: passion, fire, pain, death, sun



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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